Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Tell Me Something Tuesday [2] & Top Ten Tuesday [1]

Tell Me Something Tuesday is hosted by Rainy Day Ramblings! It's a weekly meme that discusses a wide range of topics from books to blogging. 

Q: What is worse: cliffhanger, abrupt ending or open ending?

I don't always like it when stories are perfectly wrapped up and tied with a bow (although that can be nice sometimes), so I usually prefer an open ending. It allows for endless possibilities, and you can find comfort/satisfaction in knowing that the characters you fell in love with will have a future somewhere. Even if you don't know exactly what that future is, it's fun to imagine different scenarios for them that you feel fit the rest of the story (or just something you wanted to happen).

Cliffhangers are not my favorite, but they can be written well. If I felt like the majority of the story had some resolution, and the cliffhanger is essentially just there to set up the next book, I'm okay with it. If there is a cliffhanger at the end and I haven't been given any explanations or justifications, I'm going to be pretty upset. I'll feel like I've been on a journey with someone and gained nothing from it, which leads me to...

Abrupt endings are the worst. They can be done in the form of a cliffhanger, or the author can just rush through the ending. I feel cheated when that happens. A book's story will flow and be descriptive, but the ending will make me feel like a rug has been pulled out from underneath my feet. It could also be referred to as Reader's Whiplash (it's a thing, I swear). When there are zero explanations, resolutions, or even an ounce of closure, I get really mad and tend to throw books. I also feel like I've wasted my time when a story is really enjoyable and then abruptly stops for seemingly no reason. The ending should be given just as much time and attention as the rest of the book (maybe even a little more). Endings really sticks with me, so I want them to be as great as the rest of the book.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

I'm putting my own spin on this week's topic: Ten Book Series I Forgot to Finish

I know most of you will be able to relate to this, because who hasn't read a new release, enjoyed it, and then forgot to follow up with the rest of the series... it happens. New books come out every day, so it's likely some slip through the cracks. Here is a list of ten (there's actually way more than this) book series that I forgot to finish. 
  1. The Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare 3/6
  2. Hush, Hush Series by Becca Fitzpatrick 1/4
  3. Beautiful Creatures Series by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl 2/4
  4. Artemis Fowl Series by Eoin Colfer 6/8
  5. Touch Series by Laurie Faria Stolarz 3/5
  6. Need Series by Carrie Jones 3/4
  7. The Body Finder Series by Kimberly Derting 2/4
  8. The Dark Devine Series by Bree Despain 2/3
  9. Daughters of the Sea Series by Kathryn Lasky 1/4
  10. Fallen Series by Lauren Kate 2/5
Doing this post made me realize that there are quite a few series I'd completely forgotten about. Like I said before, it's likely that I read a book when it was released and then forgot to continue the series once the next book finally came out. A lot can happen in a year, and there's no way I can remember every single series I've ever read. #booksonbooks

This has given me an idea though... maybe next year I'll challenge myself to finish all incomplete series on my shelves/TBR, or at least a few. Let me know if you have any suggestions or know someone that already hosts a feature like this. If not, I'll get creative and make one myself (maybe).

Have you read any of these? If so, should I finish them? I'll probably need to restart every series from the beginning, because I seriously doubt I'll remember what's going on. I'm pretty sure I started all of these when I blogged under Books, Sweets and Other Treats.

There are only two days left to enter the It's My Birthday! giveaway.

Thanks for stopping by! 😁

65 comments:

  1. I hate abrupt endings too. Stories that stop right after the big even with no wrap up with what happened afterwards. I finished one of those last night >.>

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    1. When books end abruptly, I feel like I've wasted all the time and energy I put into the story. Books that build and build should have something to show for it by the end of the book. Leaving readers hanging on to the edge might sound fun, but I absolutely hate it. I want books to be able to stand on their own even if they're part of a larger series.

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  2. I also don't like when books/series are too perfectly wrapped up. I tend to not like epilogues for that reason. BUT whether or not I like an open ending depends on exactly what is meant? Open, good. Open-to-interpretation (like in SFF sometimes where you're not even sure what happened or if it was all a dream or something like that), frustrating.

    I also feel exactly the same way about cliffhangers.

    Abrupt endings, for me it depends? Something like, after the problem is wrapped up, and the book just ends, I'm ok with that. But if a book ends in the middle of something, or I couldn't even tell it was about to end and then all the sudden it did without any warning (even if it's a series book), or a bunch of questions are still unanswered, then it frustrates me.

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    1. Yes! I hate the books that leave you feeling like you don't know what just happened. Like you said, it's frustrating when you're not sure if what you've just experienced was real or all in someone's head. I feel like that is something that definitely needs to be clarified by the end of the book. It's not mysterious... it's annoying.

      I don't mind epilogues. I really like them when they occur years into the future and give the overall story a more solid ending. An epilogue usually keeps a book from ending with too many unanswered questions (yay). Books that end without any warning whatsoever make me want to scream. If I'm reading an ebook, sometimes I'll keep trying to scroll to the next page thinking, "Surely that wasn't how it ended?!"

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  3. I totally agree with you about open endings! And abrupt ending are evil LOL. Also, I can't for the life of me understand why an author would do that to their precious book baby. I guess abrupt endings happen when a book hasn't been planned accurately...but then again, it's odd that it would even happen. If the rest of the book is good, that is. I think I only came across one single abrupt ending in my reading life, but now I'm curious about which books out there do have them, that you know of...As for cliffhangers, they are a sign of weak storytelling for me, but I can live with them.

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    1. I've stumbled across a few abrupt endings, and it makes me want to avoid that author's future books. I believe every book can have its own ending, even if it's part of a larger series. The smaller plot points within a story can have resolutions even when there's a bigger issue that needs to span multiple books. Like, Lord of the Rings... Frodo's main goal was delivering the ring to wherever it needed to go, but he had smaller obstacles to overcome during the other books.

      Ack, cliffhangers usually feel like abrupt endings, so I think they're both evil. <3

      *I've had to retype this post a few times because my typos are crazy bad this morning, haha.

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    2. **I didn't mean this post, I meant this response to your comment. See? My brain is still asleep. Where's the coffee?

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  4. OMG
    Aside from Daughter of the Sea every single series on this list was half finished by me... I agreed especially with Mortal Instruments and Hush Hush. They are all older series and it feels like new series seem to have a lot more originality that I just don't really have the time to go back and finish the rest of the olderseries.

    With regards to ending, I'm sort of the same - I like books which end that particular arc but leave enough open ends for it to be interesting to read the sequel without it being so open ended that it feels almost manipulative.

    Oh and I do dog-ear ;D

    I have followed you, your blog is soooooo cute :)

    Jade @ Ink Scratchers

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    1. I really want to finish all of the series on my list! I just forgot that they were there. There's always something new to look forward to, but I want to start remembering the books I enjoyed and finish the different series they're a part of. It's going to be my goal for next year! It should be easier now that most of the series are complete.

      I agree--books that close out the current arc but leave the potential for more are wonderful. I feel like I get a conclusion/resolution, but there's an opportunity for more. Author's that try to make readers continue a series because the first book ended without any answers--not cool. Readers should want to continue a series because they enjoyed the world and the characters. I love reading about the same people in different scenarios, or fighting for one massive goal, but there needs to be some closure by the end of each book.

      I think you're the first person that's admitted to dog-earring their books! Welcome to the club. <3 I'll definitely stop by your blog later. :)

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  5. Great list! You're definitely not alone - so often I love the first book in a series and I don't think it actually needs to be a series, so I quickly lose interest because I feel like the publisher are just trying to get me to spend more money. Good luck with your series challenge next year!

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    1. Right? When the first book is perfect you forget that there's more! I love books that are told from different perspectives but occur within the same place. It's almost guaranteed each book will be different and have its own conclusion.

      I've already started planning out the challenge, the trick will be implementing it so that others can participate as well.

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  6. I actually did finish the Artemis Fowl series, though I almost didn't, it was pure chance that I saw the eighth book in an airport shop!
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/06/26/top-ten-tuesday-165/

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    1. How lucky! Did the series end well? I remember enjoying it, and I think it might be one my kid would like for me to read to him. I just can't remember all of the story... I'm going to have to start from the beginning, lol.

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  7. I totally agree with you on abrupt endings. I don't like them at all either.

    Here is our Top Ten Tuesday.

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    1. Abrupt endings don't make any sense! What do they accomplish? I'm actually less inclined to continue a series when a book ends that way.

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  8. I love your list and yes, sometimes it's not that I consciously decide not to complete a series, I just kind of forget about it. I agree, I think abrupt endings are the worst and they always make me wonder what the author was going for. Was it intentional? Did they just run out of things to say? Great post.

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    1. If it's intentional, what is the point? What does an author accomplish by abruptly ending the story? Do they think it will make readers more inclined to read the next book? It has the opposite effect on me. I'm way less likely to continue a series when a book ends that way.

      As far as running out of things to say... that sounds terrible. I know that authors/editors/publishers put a lot of time and energy into their books, so why not make it the best it can be? An abrupt ending feels like cheating.

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  9. I just started the Beautiful Creatures series! Love it so far!

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    1. I need to read it from the beginning and finally finish it! I know they made a movie based on the first book... do you know if they made others? Are there movies following the entire series, or just the first book?

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  10. I hate non endings. Where the author is basically just stopping midstory until the next book. Is that an abrupt ending? Whatever it is it’s annoying!

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    1. Right?! Why would you stop in the middle of the story?? It's a horrible way to conclude a book, even when there is going to be a second one. Every book should have its own ending, and also be able to fit into a series (if it's supposed to).

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  11. I confess that for me open endings are the worst but I agree also for abrupt endings, it's frustrating

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    1. What do you not like about open endings? It really depends on the story for me... sometimes I feel like a book needs to have a solid conclusion, but other times I'm okay with the ending being more fluid and without limitations.

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  12. I don't mind open endings to an extent - if it's too open, it can be hard to feel like the book is even finished. And abrupt endings are the WORST. People tend to remember the end of books over other aspects, so it needs to be a good one, or you know, at least complete. I don't want something rushed. I'm with you on the type of cliffhangers - if it's setting up the next book, that's fine, but I don't want all the questions from book 1 to just be left hanging. Give me something!

    And I'm SO bad with finishing series - or even starting them. The last couple years I've been trying to finally finish series I started or wanted to read like the Shades of Magic series.

    Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. It is possible for an ending to leave too much unsaid. I like to be able to imagine some things for myself, but it still needs to feel like the story is concluding. I don't need to know every detail about what the characters plan on doing, just conclude what they've done and give us a direction to go in.

      I'm not bad about starting a series... just remembering to finish it! I also have a bad habit of grabbing the second book in a series without reading the first. Sometimes it's not obvious they're not a stand-alone.

      I still need to read the Shades of Magic series, too! So many books...

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  13. I was watching this movie the other day and this question made me think of it, it was left with an ending that was so open, so annoying. But yes abrupt sucks too. They all suck ;)

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    1. What movie? The Lord of the Rings? (I really to re-watch the LOTR movies soon! When I was in high school, I would binge-watch the entire series when I was sick.) If you don't like any of these endings, what do you prefer? How do you like for books to conclude?

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    1. I heartily agree with you! I get so frustrated when a books ends like, "...and then she fell into the fire." Why would you do that to your readers? It's frustrating and traumatizing. Especially when it's usually a year between books. Every books needs to be able to stand on its own, even when it's part of a series. (I feel like I've said this many times now, haha!)

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    2. However, I do secretly like it when individual chapters end in cliffhangers! It makes me excited to pick the book back up again later.

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  15. I forgot about Artemis Fowl too - think i read the first two and that's all there were last time i looked. Suddenly there are loads of them!

    My TTT: https://basedonthebook.blogspot.com/2018/06/top-ten-tuesday-series-i-gave-up-on.html

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    1. I remember enjoying the series when I started, and I honestly don't know why I never finished them. I think it'll be a fun series to read to my kid, so maybe we'll get to them soon!

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  16. Abrupt endings are the worst. I also don't like really open endings either. I think I just like to have everything concrete xD

    I've read a lot of the series that you mentioned!

    1. Mortal Instrument series is alright. I also stopped reading it on book #4 because I got tired of the two protagonists' dynamic.
    2. I read Hush, Hush series when I was younger and I remember loving it!
    3. Beautiful Creatures series is a pass for me. The main character gets a bit creepy and stalkerish.
    6. Need series was alright as well. I don't remember much of it lol...
    7. The Body Finder series was interesting. I loved the insight of solving crimes through Violet and seeing through the eyes of the serial killer. Although I do have to say the ending of the series wasn't what I hoped for.
    8. The Dark Devine series I dropped but I don't remember the reasons why.
    10. I liked the Fallen series. But I REALLY enjoy books about angels and demons so I might just be biased xD

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    1. You like your ending to be wrapped in a bow! That's how I picture books that end perfectly and leave no question unanswered. :)

      I feel like the Mortal Instruments series should have stopped at three. I thought it was supposed to be a trilogy when it started, and I never understood why there were suddenly so many additional books.

      I really want to finish the Hush, Hush series, but I'm iffy about Beautiful Creatures. It doesn't make me feel any better now that you've said the main character starts to be creepy, lol.

      I can't remember much about Need myself... Pixies, I think. The Body Finder series, The Dark Devine series, and the Fallen series... I remember zero things about them. I definitely need to re-read all the books in these so I can better enjoy their stories. <3

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    2. There was another series about angels I didn't finish... I think the first one was called Unbound? Maybe? It has the faded purple color. I think the second book was a faded blue. Do you know what series I'm talking about?

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    4. I think you might be thinking of the Unearthly series by Cynthia Hand. It certainly sounds like what you're describing with the color of the covers xD

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    5. Yep! You nailed it, lol. Thanks! <3

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  17. I couldn't agree more Lindsi, truly abrupt endings are the worst. Nothing annoys my like a really great book with a rushed-feeling ending, it just sours the whole thing for me. Cliffhangers can be awesome if done right, and same goes for open-ended endings. I actually like both of them (which is a bit controversial, I know).

    Wow, The Body Finder series! I loved the first book, but I never continued with the series either. Probably won't go back to it honestly, but I'm glad I've got such good memories of reading it. :)

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    1. Yes! It's really frustrating when you've enjoyed the entire book and then the ending feels rushed and less thorough. Why wouldn't you give the conclusion the same time and attention as the rest of the book? Endings are very important. It's the last thing a reader is left with, and it can effect how they felt about the rest of the book.

      I like cliffhangers that are done well and set up the next book. If it's something like, "...and then the knife was plunged straight into his heart," no thanks. That's too similar to an abrupt ending. However, I do love it when individual chapters end that way. I think it makes the book more exciting. And I do think cliffhangers that set up the next book are okay, too. It really just depends... lol.

      I'm curious if I'll feel the same way about these books now, since I read most 5-10 years ago. My personal preferences and tastes have changed a little over the years.

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  18. I haven't finished The Mortal Instruments series yet either. I read the first three and never got around to the fourth, but I would like to finish it in the future. Thanks for sharing this list.

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    1. When I first started the Mortal Instruments series, I thought it was supposed to be a trilogy. When did that change? How many have you read? It's been awhile, but I thought the third book had a pretty solid ending. I'm a little curious where the author has taken the story, so I hope I'm able to get them one day. I watched the movie recently and enjoyed it--wish they'd continued with those. Isn't there a TV series now?

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  19. I dislike them all, but you're right on abrupt endings!!

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    1. How do you like for your books to end? Sometimes I really enjoy tidy endings, especially when it's the last book in a long series. I feel like the characters deserve to have their stories concluded in great detail, with the tiniest hint of possibilities for the future (so I guess still a little open-ended, lol).

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  20. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who just forgets all about series that they're reading, haha.

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    1. Definitely not the only one! I was surprised by how many there were, so I just chose the first ten I came across to save time. I really think I'm going to make a challenge for next to motivate me to complete the unfinished series on my shelves. <3

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  21. I actually read the first book in the Mortal Instruments series, but gave up after that. It just wasn't grabbing me. It was also one of my first forays into fantasy, and I was just lost.

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    1. I can understand that. Do you think you'll ever revisit the book to see if your preferences/tastes have changed over time?

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  22. I definitely don't like rushed or abrupt endings. A few have actually made me mad. Open endings will depend on what led up to it.

    Oh man, I have so many series that I started and didn't finish. I think there are a few series challenges out there. We do one our our site each year for the longer series. I have done it for the last three years and make it a goal to read one book each month from a series until I get caught up on it. It helps, but yes, the list of unfinished series is sooooo long.

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    1. More than a few have made me mad, haha. It can actually turn me off of an author entirely, especially if it's something they do more than once. I hate investing in a story and then feeling like it ended in the middle of a thought.

      Oh! I had no idea you had a challenge like that. I'll definitely check it out. I've discovered challenges push me to do the things I've wanted to do for years in regards to my books. I just need the extra motivation, lol. That's why I'm participating in the Beat the Backlist Challenge this year. My goal is 100 books I've been wanting to read, and I think I'm on 31-32. I might not make 100, but I'm going to try. <3

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  23. The only one of those books I have read is the Atemis Fowl, and although both my son and I finished it, neither one of us wanted to continue. ☺

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    1. That doesn't sound very promising. I remember enjoying the first few books... do they stop being as good as the story progresses? I hate that it didn't end well!

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  24. I am not a fan of cliffhangers. If it is just something to lead into the next book I can deal with it but I need a bit of resolution. I have so many series that I have just kind of forgetten about but like you I feel like I need to do a re-read before I can move forward at this point.

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    1. It would be almost impossible to finish these series without a re-read. I wouldn't remember everything that had happened, so I would feel lost, but I also think it would take away from my enjoyment. Re-reading it is!

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  25. I agree that abrupt endings are the worst but I'm not a fan of cliffhangers.

    I never finished the Fallen series either. I read and enjoyed book one but never went beyond that. By the time book two released I'd fluttered onto many others and I just never went back. :(

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    1. Is it a series you want to go back and finish one day, or do you think you'll just leave it alone?

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  26. I don't usually forget to finish books. If it's really good, I'll be greatly anticipating the next one in the series.

    If I absolutely adore a story and it has an open ending, I sometimes write fanfiction about it.

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    1. But there are so many! This year alone I've started probably 15-20 series. Each one of them will likely have a sequel coming out next year, so a few of them will slip through the cracks. I need a shelf on Goodreads for "Unfinished Series," lol. It's great that you're able to keep up with all of them! I'm jealous.

      I love that you write fanfiction! I think it's amazing. <3

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  27. I loved the Mortal Instruments series and the Hush Hush series!!! I hope you get a chance to finish them!

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    1. I'm going to try really hard and finish all of the series I've stared and never finished. It might take me awhile, but I think it'll be worth it in the end. :)

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  28. I really do need to finish the Artemis Fowl books...I really liked the first four or five but never finished the series. I don't remember what distracted me from them but I want to get back to them.

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    1. Same! I was reading them relatively close together, but then stopped... maybe the next one wasn't out yet? That doesn't sound right, though. Whatever the reason, I plan on starting the series again and finishing it this time!

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  29. Oh those all make me upset. Unannounced cliffhangers, though, make me feel some rage. lol

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    1. Yes! They can completely ruin a book for me, which really sucks.

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